Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


47th Annual Convention; Online; 2021

All times listed are Eastern time (GMT-4 at the time of the convention in May).

Event Details

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Symposium #417
CE Offered: BACB
Promoting Implementation of Behavioral Strategies in Diverse Contexts Through Contextual Fit
Monday, May 31, 2021
12:00 PM–12:50 PM
Area: DDA; Domain: Translational
Chair: Natalie Badgett (Supporting Transformative Autism Research Initiative; University of Virginia)
Discussant: Katherine Bateman (University of Washington)
CE Instructor: Natalie Badgett, Ph.D.

Despite longstanding research supporting the effectiveness of applied behavior analysis, the field continues to struggle with dissemination of related evidence-based strategies to diverse applied settings. One barrier to widespread implementation of applied behavior analysis in non-clinical settings is the issue of contextual fit. Simply put, sustainable implementation of behavioral strategies is more likely to occur when the interventions are contextually relevant. In this symposium the issue of contextual relevance, or contextual fit, is presented as an essential feature of promoting implementation and dissemination of assessment and intervention strategies based in applied behavior analysis. First, we will present a research-based case for the use of mixed methods behavioral research as a strategy to promote implementation. Then, we will present an analysis of family systems and behavioral systems analysis for supporting the incorporation of client values and context in implementation. Implications for future research and practice will be discussed and connected to existing and ongoing research occurring within applied behavior analysis and related fields.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Keyword(s): Contextual Fit, Implementation
Target Audience:

The target audience will have a basic understanding of behavior analysis and experience using single case research designs in research or practice.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) describe how qualitative methods can be used to enhance single case research findings in research and practice; (2) identify factors for sustainable implementation of behavioral strategies related to contextual fit; (3) describe how tools and approaches from family systems, behavioral systems analysis, and applied behavior analysis can be combined to support practitioners in the identification and incorporation of client values and context for intervention.
Using Mixed Methods Research to Promote the Implementation of Behavioral Intervention
(Service Delivery)
NATALIE BADGETT (Supporting Transformative Autism Research Initiative; University of Virginia), Rachelle Huntington (University of Hawaii)
Abstract: Assessment and intervention strategies based in applied behavior analysis have substantial research supporting their effectiveness with diverse populations in applied and clinical contexts. Behavioral strategies are well-represented among established evidence-based practices in related fields such as psychology and education. Additionally, research by behavior analysts and related experts has demonstrated that non-behavioral practitioners can implement many behavioral strategies with fidelity when trained sufficiently. However, despite the wealth of existing literature establishing the utility and effectiveness of these strategies, there remains a critical research to practice gap that is evident in the ongoing dissemination crisis facing behavior analysts. Engaging in mixed methods research, in which single case research findings are enhanced by qualitative methods, presents a possible avenue for promoting the implementation of evidence-based behavior analytic interventions in diverse contexts. This presentation will include a rationale for the inclusion of qualitative methods in behavioral research and practice, case examples of mixed methods behavioral research, and implications of findings of mixed methods research for implementation of behavioral strategies in diverse applied settings.
Developing Evidence-Based Practice: Ways and Means for Raising Client Values and Context
(Service Delivery)
BRIAN JAMES FEENEY (University of Nevada, Reno), Bethany P. Contreras Young (University of Nevada, Reno)
Abstract: Evidence-based practice (EBP) of applied behavior analysis (ABA) is the combination of (a) the best available evidence with (b) professional judgement and clinical expertise and (c) client values and context (Slocum et al., 2014). EBP of ABA is a flexible decision-making framework that allows practicing behavior analysts to solve virtually any clinical problem. Of the three components of EBP, best available evidence benefits from having a large literature base to guide practitioners, whereas the other two components, professional judgement/clinical expertise and client values and context, are much less understood and warrant further exploration and refinement. This presentation will explore the client values and context component of EBP of ABA. By looking at resources both within the field of ABA and from other helping-professions, we will present a model for assessing and addressing client values and context. Specifically, we will evaluate and combine tools and approaches from Family Systems, Behavioral Systems Analysis and ABA in an effort to better support practitioners in their identification and incorporation of client values and context within the broader framework of EBP.



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